Great news!!! I am now that parent that gets yelled at by grocery store attendants about their rambunctious child! Yeah, I know, I’m so proud… Today has been one of those days. You know the kind, where you end up in a drunken stupor and regretting the choices you’ve made in your life? Yep, that’s the one!
It all began with the lawn guy that I pay to mow the yard who was supposed to come by last Saturday and never showed up, simultaneously ringing the doorbell while knocking on the door at 8 o’clock this morning. That wouldn’t have been too much of annoyance if my husband and I hadn’t spent the entire week staying up until 2am on a Netflix marathon binge. Needless to say, I wasn’t ready to be awake yet. The lawn guy… I like him, he’s a nice guy just trying to make a buck, which I respect. He also seems to be a bit of a tweaker which makes me nervous. The last time I saw him before last week, was at least six months ago. He showed up at my door last week out of nowhere, with only two fingers left on one hand and none on the other, asking if I wanted the yard to be mowed. I felt like I should have paid him for just having rode his bicycle all the way to our house with his lawn mower tethered to it, with no fingers. Of course, I told him to come back on Saturday because I had no cash on me to pay him at the time. Saturday rolls by and he doesn’t. I didn’t mind and felt like maybe he had bigger issues to tend to. This morning however, I was not in the mood nor expecting to have to wake myself and the baby up, get us both dressed and out of the door to find a WORKING ATM in this town to pull out money when I had no clue that he would show up. I did it anyway. He came back about two hours later with his mower and took care of everything.
I waited for him to be done and decided since my fridge and pantry looked like they had just been picked apart to bones by seagulls, that I needed to grocery shop. I got my daughter ready to head back out of the door as she had shed all of her clothes from the earlier dressing this morning and was laying in her underwear inside of a pillow case.
The grocery store… Great prices, never more than one cash register open, you have to bring your own bags or boxes and bag your own groceries and if you didn’t bring bags, they’ll gladly sell you some. Not to mention that you have to put a quarter in the grocery cart line in order to get a shopping cart, before you even begin to shop. In writing that I just realized that again, I forgot to get my quarter back when I returned the cart, ugh. So I get a cart and my daughter says she wants to go for a walk in the store and doesn’t want to sit in the basket. I wish she was big enough to push me around the store and that I was small enough to fit in the cart, because walking would not have been my first choice! My child is throwing all kinds of snacks that I never buy, into the buggy and I am behind her taking them each out of the cart and putting it all back on the shelves, sans a few crackers. That was just the beginning. She’s a runner and if you take your eye off of her for more than a few seconds she will be long gone. My theory for her doing this is, she is looking for a way to escape having me as her parent and hoping to run to someone better, but I catch her just before this happens, each time.
I coaxed my daughter into holding onto the side of the cart with one hand at this point, under the guise that I needed her to help me push the cart because she’s so much stronger than me. As we walked through the store I knew what all that I needed and went aisle by aisle to all of the items that I was there to get while she continued to grab miscellaneous crap. She threw three more wedges of Asiago and Parmigiano in the basket. It was an annoying and equally proud Italian mama moment for me, as I had already put three blocks of both in my cart. Then she refused to hold onto the basket any longer and decided if I was going to make her hold on to it, that she would stretch her arms wide and hold onto the basket and the refrigerated food section doors at the same time, blocking the aisle from anyone trying to pass by. I defused that situation a few times before having to physically force her to stand on the opposite side of the basket, next to me and out of the aisle. The whole time she is smarting off at me for making her hold onto the buggy.
We get to the check out and as the cashier is literally throwing my items into an empty cart for me to bag myself after paying for them, my daughter is complaining that she wants to stand on the shelf where we lay our groceries out to bag and I am ready to shoot myself in the forehead. I pay for the food, put this child on the shelf thing and she watches me bag groceries. I’m halfway done when I turn around the grab more items out of the cart to put on the shelf when my daughter stands up on the shelf and decides to go running up and down it. I turn around to see it just as the grocery store clerk yells, “She can’t be running on that, Ma’am, you need to make her stop!!!” I immediately snap at my daughter to sit the hell down and the clerk proceeds to yell at me further that she cannot be sitting, standing, or running on that shelf. Seeing as the cashier had my entire buggy filled with grocery items that he threw about, there was literally no place for me to put her in the cart now. I looked at the clerk yelling at me with a stewing glare and she quietly turned around and walked away. I told my daughter she was going to lay down for a nap as soon as we got home and she proceeded to argue with me that she wasn’t.
Then at a stoplight while I’m telling my husband how terrible his child had been in the store, I forget somehow that green means go and stay talking to him on the phone while the Sherriff in the turning lane beside me honks at me to go and I flip him off. No, I did not know it was a cop and no I did not realize that I was stopped at a green light. He must have seen the look of total flustered frustration on my face because he was kind enough not to do anything but let me figure it out on my own. That’s also the first time in my life that a cop hasn’t jumped at the chance to pull me over for any reason they could find or make up. It was a special moment.
I came home to spend two hours cutting up vegetables and portioning them in freezer bags because my refrigerator obliterates all produce to the point of unusable, so I have to flash freeze everything as soon as I buy it. Meanwhile my child is whining about why she doesn’t need to be taking a nap and how mean I am. Because my loving husband bought the biggest bag of ice known to man the other day, the entire bottom section were I freeze the meats, was full so I spent another hour trying to figure out where I would put my smoothie mixes and produce to fit all of the meats that I just bought. I still forgot bread, laundry soap and dish soap, so back to the store I will return when I can shake off my bad attitude.
It’s been a long day and I am ready to throw in the towel and take up drinking as my full time job instead of being a parent to a toddler. I have had three kids and have never been yelled at by anyone to control them. In fact I was more judgmental of parents who’s kids were unruly in public. Now I am the parent of “THAT child.” Guess that came back to bite me firmly on the butt. It’s humiliating to be that parent and I feel for everyone out there trying their best to keep the reigns on their headstrong child. It’s a tough character to break into submission. I know, because I’m headstrong too. Ah crap… I guess that makes it my fault. This day just keeps getting better and better! When you’re waiting in expectation of this child, you never imagine the day where you would look at them and for a second not like them. That they would ever bring you to a place of total frustration, but they’re human. They have the same capability of being complete jerks like the rest of us do. Those unsightly qualities are just as alive in them as they are in everyone. The best thing that my mother ever told me was, “This too will pass, honey.” I’m hanging onto the ideal that my kid will not always be THIS difficult, but I’m definitely not holding my breath! She will either be an upstanding, person in power as an adult or she’ll be the leader of the baddest prison gang ever seen. One or the other, I’ll have to love her.